Thursday, October 28, 2010

Happy Halloween!

With all the assignments us CreCommers have been producing this week, let's put that fright behind us and enjoy a bit of Halloween fun this weekend shall we?

Here are a few jokes I thought everyone would get a kick out of for the up coming Halloween weekend!

Q. Why did the Vampire read the Wall Street Journal?
A. He heard it had great circulation.

Q. What are ghosts' favorite kind of streets?
A. Dead ends

Q. Which building does Dracula visit in New York?
A. The Vampire State Building.

Q. What do you get when you cross a vampire with the internet?
A. blood-thirsty hacker baby

Q. Why did the ghost go into the bar?

A. For the Boos.

Q. Where do ghosts go out?
A. Where they can get sheet-faced.

Never read a book of demon summoning aloud, even as a joke.When it appears that you have killed the monster, NEVER check to see if it's really dead. It isn't.

If you're running from the monster, expect to trip or fall down at least twice, more if you are of a female. Even though you may be faster than the monster, you can be sure that it WILL catch you.

If your friends suddenly begin to exhibit uncharacteristic behavior such  as hissing, fascination for blood, glowing eyes, increasing hairiness, and so on, get away from them as fast as possible

Stay away from certain geographical locations, some of which are listed here:  Amityville, Elm Street, Transylvania, Meskatonic University, Camp Crystal Lake, Haddonfield, Illinois, one gas station desert towns or any small town in Maine.

If your children speak to you in Latin or any other language which they should not know, or if they speak to you using a voice other than their own, shoot them immediately. It will save you a lot of grief in the long run.  NOTE: It will probably take several rounds to kill them, so be prepared.

Have a happy and safe Halloween!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Socially Acceptable Network

In the movie The Social Network, the viewer experiences the creation of Facebook and the trailblazing done by founder and CEO, Mark Zuckerberg. The portrayal of Zuckerberg is done in a way that, not to discredit the ingenuity of the concept of social networking, paints him somewhat a plagiarizing way. 

The movie insinuates at times, Zuckerberg ripped off the idea that came from Harvard students Cameron Winklevoss, Tyler Winklevoss, and Divya Narendra. They accused Zuckerberg of intentionally making them believe he would help them build a social network called (Wikipedia) As a viewer, having the entire movie revolve around lawsuits pending this very issue, I was led to believe the original idea was not owned by Zuckerberg, rather the other students attending Harvard.

If I were Zuckerberg I would feel that the release of the movie has definitely helped Any and all additional information portrayed in this film, is not going to sway the use of the generation of social networkers. I include myself in that particular generation as Facebook sits in a pop-up window at the top of my window, and after seeing the movie, I feel I am more knowledgeable on the creation, however, will continue to use it as my main way to social network.

I believe that Zuckerberg’s response to the release of the movie was just cause. The movie was based upon his creation and coding of, and the law suit that followed. As far a Zuckerberg as a person, his response was that this movie is in fact a fiction. I believe that this backup was completely necessary for the mere reasons of my initial first impression of him a person. I don't think his response to the film will sway any audience's perception of the site or its founders. I would have, like him, explained that this movie was fiction. This movie was created like all the other movies in Hollywood, under bright lights and through cameras.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Can you put a price on fabulous food?

This past weekend, I had the luxury of dining at Hermanos Restaurant and Wine Bar.

ON THE MENU: Pipa Camarose, which is peel and eat prawns.

Dressed in a cocktail dress, with my nails freshly painted I found this item to be the most difficult and messiest item I have ever eaten. The prawns were soaked in juices and the shells weren't pre-cut making the job of getting to your food a real challenge. In most cases with seafood, such as crab legs, I enjoy the feat. Aside from the flavor which was a lovely sweet and spicy garlic, we received probably about 10 prawns inclusive of shells, feet, tentacles.

At first glance, it looks like the plate had been garnished with sprig upon sprig of rosemary or another herb, but it wasn't. It was part of the shrimp. At a price of $17, I was disgusted by seafood for the first time in my life. For those regular who enjoy this dish regularly, they may disagree.

ON THE MENU: Marinated Chicken Tenders with Mango Salsa 

This was enjoyable. There was an essence of lime marinade on the chicken, and the fresh mango salsa complemented the citrus flavor. We received four chicken skewers, equivalent to one breast, for $13.

The most impressive aspect to my visit to Hermanos, was defiantly the service. The restaurant was full upon entering at which point, we were immediately approached by the manager to see if we were happy to wait for a moment. Once seated, the hostess brought us menus right away after wiping our table. Our server was timely to order us cocktails, and quality checked throughout our meal. At one point, the manager even asked us how we were enjoying our visit.

The beverage enjoyed was their house organic merlot which was lovely 

Hermanos set the bar for service but the price vs. quality of food was questionable. I will definitely return to explore their large selection of wines.

Friday, October 15, 2010

International Wine Festival of Manitoba

The International Wine Festival of Manitoba is on this weekend at The Forks. If you enjoy sipping 'vino' or would like to find out if you do, check out the festival on October 15, 16, or 17 to sample and enjoy wines from over 100 wineries!  They are represented this year with experts on hand, ready to offer suggestions and educate you as you discover different grapes from all over the world.

As per the MTS website, you are encouraged to stroll through The Market Courtyard and visit the Cheese booth. The booth features over 750 varieties of cheese from Fenton's Gourmet Foods.  Cheese- a perfect compliment to any glass of wine or simply by itself. There is also a Wine Encyclopedia & Menu Planning booth for assistance in wine-pairing.

What more could you ask for? Free admission!

Sampling tickets are 50¢ each.

Hours for the weekend wining:
Friday Oct 15- 5 pm-9 pm
Saturday Oct 16- noon-6:30 pm
Sunday Oct 17- noon-6:30 pm

Monday, October 11, 2010

On the menu- Pumpkin Curry Soup

Thanksgiving dinner is always a treat. From the homemade wine and deviled eggs, to of course the people you surround yourself with, it's a day where you can stop and say thanks. This year I offered to make the soup course, and if you are a fan of curry, you will love the flavor of this new family favorite. Enjoy the recipe.

Pumpkin Curry Soup

Sautee one onion and half stalk of celery in a large pot
1 can pumpkin puree (pumkin pie filling)
1 L of chicken broth
Start with 2 heaping tablespoons of Masala curry powder,
add more if you like

Bring to a boil

Add a rue:

2 tablespoons butter
4 tablespoons flour
1 L of milk or cream

Bring to a boil until it thickens.

Add the rue to the soup base, whisking in slowly, and reduce, simmer and enjoy!

Yield: 10 servings

Buyer Beware...Buyer Informed!

We all know the option is there for us to purchase environmentally friendly products in substitution to typical brand names. This blog, and outline of our experiment, will hopefully leave you with the ability to make an informed decision about your  purchasing habits for household cleaning items.

Algae blooms on Lake Winnipeg

As per Lake Friendly, an organization whose intent behind the Lake Friendly Label is to ultimately reduce the impacts on Lake Winnipeg from excessive nutrients and from other harmful materials in common household products each day in our homes, state that with the amount of phosphates entering the water from our yards and across the landscape, the products we flush and rinse down the drain enter our waters, are causing toxic algae blooms and polluting our water

Our Buyer Beware teams' initiative was to conduct experiments to compare the effectiveness of environmentally friendly products to typical brand name products to see if there was a difference in quality, effectiveness and price.

We tested laundry, dish and hard surface cleaners. We used three brand names in each category and one lake friendly product.

For the laundry experiment, we stained white shirts with five different stains and then washed the shirts separately in Tide, Gain, no name, Nature Clean (eco). Although Tide dominated this experiment, Nature Clean came in third for most effective.

For the dish experiment, I made lasagna to dirty up our dishes, and then I soaked one plate at a time in a sink with each of the products. Our products were Dawn, Palmolive, Sunlight, and Nature Clean (eco). Each plate was immersed half-way under water for less than 3 minutes. Nature Clean dominated the dish test, removing the most amount of residue during the soak test.

For the hard surface cleaner experiment, Hayley let a tomato-like residue dry on her stove for one day. The products tested were Lysol, Vim Oxy-Gel, Mr. Clean, and Nature Clean (eco). Vim Oxy-Gel removed the most amount of residue, but Hayley commented she liked how the Nature Clean was able to be applied. Nature Clean was in a close-second for effectiveness.

In closing, after completion of all experiments, our observations were that the typical brand names didn’t come out ahead in all cases, compared to the environmentally friendly products. This was surprising that the lake friendly products, that don’t contain harmful phosphates and by-products, can be just as effective.

The Nature Clean brand line seems not only to be effective and comparable in price, it is also the product that is most friendly to our environment and eco-system. Our recommendation is to make informed decisions when purchasing your household cleaners and take into consideration that the product choice you make, can be an environmentally friendly one without sacrificing quality.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

"It's like apples and oranges my dear Sam Katz..."

This morning's electoral forum debate at Red River College was nothing less than... interesting. This was my first live political debate.

It started off with the topic of increasing crime rates and what each candidate proposes to do about the problem in Winnipeg. When Sam Katz and Judy Wasylycia-Leis were asked to comment on the newly purchased police helicopter, I found myself having a hard time differentiating between who was speaking because they were interrupting eachother. Throw the 'mediator', Richard Cloutier, into the mix, and it was a full on matter of how well you can multi-task interpreting mass amounts of information at the same time.

When I worked in Grade 3, we had such a thing called a sharing stone that would enable only one child at a time to speak. It had a friendly ladybug painted on it. Perhaps this is an idea for electoral debates, as it would deem the event to be more of a professional caliber.

I was lucky enough to have to opportunity to ask the political candidates a question at the end of the debate. I asked if they would be able to say something nice about eachother or give eachother a compliment at which point, there were no words, only Katz getting up out of his seat and hugging Wasylycia-Leis. I suppose there was just too much to say in too little time.